This is the fifth blog about my forthcoming book, God-Curious: Asking Eternal Questions.
As I worked on the book last summer it became clear to me that if theology is going to have future it will have to take into account the intuition that there is more to knowing than words alone can encapsulate. Indeed it will also have to take into account the point that if theology is about the transcendent nothing is ever going to be to encapsulate it at all.
This is how I conclude the ninth chapter, ‘Pictures, Poetry and God’.
It seems inevitable to me that theology is going to be
increasingly contemplative in the future, and that the visual
and the poetic will become ever more important to theologians.
Among the factors that I believe will push this process along
will be our increasingly broad, sophisticated and sympathetic
understanding of the beliefs and claims of other religious systems
and an ever clearer understanding that a merely ‘scientific’
approach to life, while splendid at forging breakthroughs in
understanding that translate into astonishing applications
in terms of technology and medicine, do not actually answer
all our questions or deliver the sort of long-term answers and
perspectives that satisfy our deepest longings. To deal adequately
with those issues we need to engage with something that can
properly be called ‘theology’ and for theology to be itself it must
not only be wise enough to learn from its own great history
of reflection but bold enough to engage with the realities that
press upon people in today’s world. Moreover, it must be a
discipline that uses to the full the intellectual capacities of the
whole human brain, and neither disparages nor fears the power
of imagination and imagery or the poetic uses of language.
And to me this is very exciting and very positive future indeed, because theology is a very big subject indeed.
Tomorrow I will share a few pre-publication comments that others have made about the book. Meanwhile, do have a look at it on the JKP website God-Curious JKP
And, if you are interested at studying theology with me at King’s College, Cambridge take a look here: Theology at King’s